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European Parliament proposals to regulate the right to disconnect

In January 2021, The European Parliament adopted a resolution calling on the European Commission to adopt as soon as possible a directive establishing a so-called right to disconnect for all workers using digital tools for work purposes, a draft of which is annexed to the resolution. The right to disconnect is understood as the exclusion of digital tools for professional purposes outside of working time. The purpose of this article is to discuss the proposed legal framework for the right to disconnect and highlight the challenges that the right to disconnect must face. Analyzing the proposals of the European Parliament, the author draws attention, inter alia, to the doubts concerning the subjective scope of the right to disconnect. The biggest challenges include establishing practical arrangements for disabling digital tools, especially in the case of flexible working time arrangements, enterprises operating internationally and/or with continuous operations that prevent server shutdowns. The author also points out that the implementation of the right to disconnect cannot be focused on technical and organizational solutions but requires that the problem of workload and time management be solved in accordance with the right to disconnect.

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Keywords: right to disconnect; digital tools; working time; rest time; health; work-life balance; discrimination



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